Friday, October 06, 2006

Kitty Teeth

I’m settling in after having dropped off Ashley at the vet this morning. I’ve really gotta get a smaller case for her; the one we inherited from City Critters is larger than the one we used to use for Phoebe and Pongo, who were twice Ashley’s size.

When I got there, one of the receptionists was new and seemed not to be getting what I was asking. And she said that the vets don’t do the dental anyway—it’s done by technicians. Finally, we established that my regular vet was not the supervising vet for the dental today, but that she was there if I wanted to speak with her. So Ashley and I waited in the reception area with three daschunds and an English Bull Terrier.

Our vet was smiling as usual, thank goodness. She knows how to deal with neurotic pet owners. She said that she was seeing patients until noon, but if I wanted to hold off on the dental until noon, she would supervise Ashley then.

“Great! I wanted somebody who knows Ashley’s history, with the ear infections. I also found something out since we were in here with her a couple of weeks ago.” I told her what I had heard from the volunteer who had adopted Ashley's mother, who had been half-feral when rescued and had not been handled by humans or given adequate vet care for most of approximately 17 years.

“Oh yes, the cat with the tumor in her ear.”

“Yeah, that one. Is she…”

“Yeah, she’s gone,” she replied sadly.

“Oh, I’m sorry. Don’t tell Ashley,” I pretended to cover Ashley’s ears through the carrier. “I’m her real mother now. But that’s why I’m so crazy with this—I want to keep Ashley from going through the same thing, so I’ve been on top of her health and getting her used to being handled.”

So I was reassured that Ashley would be well taken care of, and I could call after noon to find out how things were going.

I’ll have to remember to breathe in the meantime. I’ll also have to remember to ask the front office staff about health certificates when I go to pick up Ashley this afternoon. The place we're considering boarding the cats at while our walls are being demolished and rebuilt wants a certificate stating that they're leukemia-negative and up-to-date on all shots.

I’ll pick up a Sherpa bag as our extra carrier before boarding time. In fact, maybe I’ll pick up two. But I feel superstitious about calling the kennel or buying anything until this afternoon when I get the news that Ashley’s okay, the way I feel superstitious about doing anything to tempt fate when Jim has a scan.

If the mother cat lived until 17 with inadequate vet care, that's some pretty hearty genes. Hopefully, Ashley's inherited them.

Update: Home, and stoned on pain meds. No ear trouble, but a couple of rotten teeth pulled.

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